You Will Not Know Peace Until You Treat Us Like Others — Bandits Tell Government, Says Attack Will Continue
After 56- days of untold hardship and exposure to an unfriendly atmosphere in the hands of their abductors, the remaining students of Federal College of Forestry Mechanization, Afaka, Kaduna State were released on Wednesday 5, May but reunited with their families yesterday(7 May 2021).
Originally, 39 Afaka Students were abducted back in March before 10 were released in two batches of five leaving the remaining students at 29. While 29 continued to be the number reportedly left in the kidnapper’ s den, a statement released by the parents clarified that out of the 29 students, two escaped immediately after their abduction.
A lot of things have been shared by this released student during their reunion session with their families particularly on their experiences while in the abductor’ s net. A student identified as Pamela Ibrahim said, before their release, the bandits informed them that they do not hold anything against the student but needed to settle some things with the state government. She said the bandits told them that they also want to be educated like others and enjoy the necessities of life and vowed that until the State government fulfil this, they will not rest on their oars.
” Before they released us, the kidnappers told us that they didn’ t have anything against us (students). They said they kidnapped us because they needed the government to settle things with them and wanted to be educated like other Nigerians. They need work and houses too.she narrates
” They said if the government doesn’ t settle with them, they will continue to make sure that Kaduna State is unsafe. They said they meant it. Some of them are Nigerians, others are foreigners. They spoke mainly Fulani (language) and Hausa, She added
Another student whose name was given as Zakariya Magaji said what the bandits need most is prayers. He said he has forgiven all of them but urge Nigerians to pray that God should touch their individual hearts.
Sarah Sunday said they were severely maltreated by the bandits but said she is grateful to God that none of them was molested or killed. She said they were seldom beaten by the bandits but always under their strict surveillance with armed rifles. She lamented how they were being fed by the bandits saying that they are fed with unbalanced ration throughout their stay.
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